Gough adds another bronze to World Cup luge medal haul
KOENIGSSEE, Germany - Canada's Alex Gough spoiled a Germany domination of a World Cup women's luge event on Wednesday, capturing a bronze medal on the German track.
Gough clocked a two-run combined time of one minute 42.215 seconds, which was just off the pace set by gold medallist Natalie Geisenberger, who stopped the clock in 1:41.756. Geisenberger's Germany teammate, Tatjana Hufner, was second in 1:41.776.
The German women's team has won 103 straight World Cup races.
Gough, a 23-year-old native of Calgary, was third after her 51.065 second first run, then followed up with a 51.185 second final run.
It was her third bronze medal in four races in what has become a historic season.
“I had really good training runs this week and felt good coming into the race,” said Gough. “This track has a really flat start so the hard work I did on my starts this summer really paid off here today. It was great to get back on the podium.”
A two-time Olympian, Gough had third-place finishes at Winterberg, Germany, and Park City, Utah, this season.
“I went into the season hoping that a podium would come,” she said. “Once it did, I experienced what it was like to be there and I also learned that I can be there. I know it is not going to happen every week, but things have changed in that it is the goal every week now.”
The only other Canadian in action on Wednesday, World Cup rookie Arianna Jones of Calgary, was 14th in 1:44.052.
Gough's first ever World Cup medal game in December in Germany, marking the start of unparalleled success in Canadian luge, as she has become the only Canadian to win multiple World Cup luge medals.
Marie-Claude Doyen (1984 in Sarajevo), Tyler Seitz (2002 in Calgary) and Regan Lauscher (2004 in Lake Placid, New York), are the only other Canadians to reach the World Cup podium in luge.
“I obviously know people are talking about the history of these results, but I think being in it makes it hard to appreciate right now because I'm so immersed in the season,” said Gough. “My confidence is good right now, but this sport is such a mental game within yourself. I want to keep having good results. It is great for our sport, but I can't get ahead of the process. Once I get home and process everything this spring, I think it may hit home.”
Canada's men's duo of Calgary's Justin Snith and Tristan Walker, of Cochrane, Alta., finished 17th in Wednesday's doubles event. Germany's Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt won the gold, while Italy's Christian Oberstolz and Patrick Gruber took silver and Austria's Andreas Linger and Wolfgang Linger finished third.
A men's singles race and team relay races are scheduled for Thursday in Konigssee.